Truth Dare Kill Gor­don Fer­ris, Corvus, $29.99

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Danny Mccrae was a sergeant in the po­lice be­fore war in­ter­vened. Then he was a sergeant in the army. Ideal qual­i­fi­ca­tions for a pri­vate de­tec­tive. Un­for­tu­nately, his stint in spe­cial ops ended in a con­cen­tra­tion camp and brain dam­age that lives on in ex­cru­ci­at­ing headaches and ter­ri­fy­ing black­outs. Strug­gling in post-war London, he thinks his luck’s on the turn when an up­per-class beauty en­gages him to find out what hap­pened to a friend – Danny’s for­mer boss and a man he des­per­ately wants to speak to him­self in an ef­fort to fill in his mem­ory blanks. All, of course, is not what it seems. In the first of a se­ries, Scot­tish au­thor Fer­ris de­liv­ers a Chan­dleresque tale full of pathos and sat­ur­nine one-lin­ers. Shel­ley Or­chard

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